Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Christmas Cheer

Pre-Christmas Blessings

No need to dream of a white Christmas this year.
We had SNOW, lots of it!
We live in Colorado, but in the southern part of the state, we don't get a lot of snow.
This year we were blessed with the beautiful fluffy, white stuff a few days before Christmas.
This was a very good thing because we need the moisture.

Boston loves the snow.
Now if we can just train him to shovel the walks!

This is Boston's first Christmas.
The value of a private education is truly priceless.
After spending a few weeks at boarding school, Boston posed perfectly in front of the Christmas tree.

Christmas Eve

We had a houseful for Christmas Eve.
My husband's children, their spouses, their children, and his former wife and her husband all joined us for dinner at our house.  

An hour before dinner was to be served, I had a cooking disaster.
I foolishly began cooking Spanish rice on top of the stove in a glass casserole dish.
What was I thinking????
Just as the rice came to a boil, the dish exploded.
There was rice and glass everywhere.
Suffice it to say that it was not a pretty sight to see rice, glass, tomatoes, and red peppers covering the stove top and the floor.
Thankfully, neither Jim nor I were cut or injured.
Thankfully, the girls arrived just in time and came to my rescue by cleaning up the mess and making the chicken enchilada recipe while I made more Spanish rice.

Dinner was only 20 minutes late.
Jim's girls ate cookies while they waited for dinner to cook.

Trinette, Thia, and Trista
Eat dessert first is a good motto!
The family gathered in the family room and got acquainted with Boston.

Finally, dinner was ready to be served.

It wouldn't be Christmas at our house with out the Christmas tamales.

My Christmas present from my husband was delivered earlier in the day.
It was this beautiful new table.

Jim's grandchildren always love being together.
Aren't they all beautiful?

The desserts included cookies, potica, another Pueblo tradition, pizzelles, and pumpkin pie.
I did no baking this year.  
In fact, after this year's cooking disaster, I may rethink choosing to cook for a large family gathering.
Catering always works well.  

After dinner, we gathered to open presents.

Jim's beautiful daughters pose for a photo.

We are blessed to be surrounded by family.

The girls love their SmartWool socks from their daddy.

Jim's former wife, and the mother of his girls, joined us with her husband.

My man all tied up in a pretty red bow.

No more excuses.  We now have a great new recipe book to help us with our new lifestyle of cooking healthy food.  (Christmas dinner was excluded from the healthy food choice list!)

Boston got an edible card from K & L's dogs.
He loved it!

Christmas Day

Christmas Day, Amy drove down from the Boulder area with her two children to celebrate.
The kids were super patient.  They had to wait until afternoon to open their presents.

My beautiful daughter, Amy...

Judging from the reaction, I think Hannah and Mason were thrilled with the new iPad they received.

Believe it our not, Amy bought me a new rice cooker before my cooking disaster.
I sure could have used it the night before!

After presents were opened and dinner was eaten, Hannah got on her warm winter coat and headed for the trampoline.  This girl loves to jump.

This was a whole new experience.  She loved it.

Christmas in A Modern Age

Christmas night Grandpa Jim taught the kids how to organize their icons on the iPad and set them up with for facetime.  It was pretty funny to watch the kids talk to Grandpa, who was sitting across the room from them, via facetime using the iPad.  Amy had to join in using her iPhone.  

Just as we did when I was a kid, the kids did play a new board game they received.
Then, Mason played on his iPad.
Hannah played on her Kindle Fire.
Grandpa Jim listened to his Audible books via his iPhone.
Amy texted on her iPhone.
Grandma Sally enjoyed looking at photos posted on facebook of the Christmas celebration held in Boston by son Jon and his family.
That evening, my 95 year old mother posted a Christmas greeting thanking everyone for the Christmas photos that had been posted on facebook.

All in all, Christmas of 2011 was wonderful.
We were surrounded by loved ones. 
With a little help from technology,
we also were able to feel connected to those loved ones who live far away.
Family, I'll take that as the best Christmas gift of all.